Romania’s bats form one of the most important and diverse bat populations in Europe. This importance is due to the great number of species and the size of colonies. Equally important is the fact that in Romania there are still natural habitats, clean rivers, large undisturbed and old forests, as well as naturally or artificially protected caves.

Up to this moment, Romania has a bat fauna of 32 species. In comparison, Great Britain has a bat fauna of 17 species, while Norway of only 10 species. In Romania it is still not that hard to find colonies with over 500-1.000 bats. These colonies are usually sheltered in caves, bridges and buildings. The largest building-dwelling colonies in Romania include over 2.000 bats.

Two of the largest bat colonies in Europe are found in Romania, each numbering about 100.000 bats. There are caves in our country that are home to over 20 bat species. The enigmatic greater noctule, Europe’s largest bat species, hunts in the untouched ancient forests of Romania. Caves situated at altitudes over 1.500-2.000 m offer roosts for the northern bat, with its typical coloration of black and gold. The warmer caves in the warmer, submediterranean habitats of Southern Romania present ideal conditions for all five European horseshoe bat species to be present. The 32 Romanian bat species are grouped into 10 genera, and they are as follows:

1. Horseshoe bats (genus Rhinolophus)

Liliac mare cu potcoavă (Rhinolophus ferrumequinum) - Nagy patkósdenevér - Greater horseshoe bat. Photo: Szilárd Bücs.

Greater horseshoe bat

Rhinolophus ferrumequinum

Lesser horseshoe bat

Rhinolophus hipposideros

Mediterranean horseshoe bat

Rhinolophus euryale

Blasius’ horseshoe bat

Rhinolophus blasii

Mehely’s horseshoe bat

Rhinolophus mehelyi

2. Mouse-eared bats (genus Myotis)

Daubenton’s bat

Myotis daubentonii

Long-fingered bat

Myotis capaccinii

Pond bat

Myotis dasycneme

Alcathoe whiskered bat

Myotis alcathoe

Whiskered bat

Myotis mystacinus

Brandt’s bat

Myotis brandtii

Steppe whiskered bat

Myotis aurascens

Natterer’s bat

Myotis nattereri

Geoffroy’s bat

Myotis emarginatus

Bechstein’s bat

Myotis bechsteinii

Greater mouse-eared bat

Myotis myotis

Lesser mouse-eared bat

Myotis oxygnathus

3. Noctules, evening bats (genus Nyctalus)

Noctule

Nyctalus noctula

Greater noctule

Nyctalus lasiopterus

Leisler’s bat

Nyctalus leisleri

4. Serotines (genus Eptesicus)

Serotine

Eptesicus serotinus

Northern bat

Eptesicus nilssonii

5. Particolored bats (genus Vespertilio)

Parti-coloured bat

Vespertilio murinus

6. Pipistrelles (genus Pipistrellus)

Common pipistrelle

Pipistrellus pipistrellus

Soprano pipistrelle

Pipistrellus pygmaeus

Kuhl’s pipistrelle

Pipistrellus kuhlii

Nathusius’s pipistrelle

Pipistrellus nathusii

7. Genus Hypsugo

Savi’s pipistrelle

Hypsugo savii

8. Long eared bats (genus Plecotus)

Brown long-eared bat

Plecotus auritus

Grey long-eared bat

Plecotus austriacus

9. Barbastelles (genus Barbastella)

Western barbastelle

Barbastella barbastellus

10. Bent-winged bats (genus Miniopterus)

Schreibers’ bat

Miniopterus schreibersii

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